I am the “poster child” for HOA abuse committed by fellow board members. When I discovered fraud and theft, I tried to become a whistle blower. I served 18 hours in city jail because of the illegal charges the majority of the board created against me. I was falsely arrested with the help of the HOA attorney Name Withheld. I spent two years in the city court system defending myself against the trumped up charges of violating an injunction which I never received for swimming in my community pool. It was a misdemeanor criminal charge. I had to short sell my condo and lost $65,000.
The D &O insurance carrier, Liberty Mutual Insurance, paid out in excess of $60,000 to defend me against attorneys who were hired by the board majority. Fees in excess of $75,000 were used by the plantiffs’ attorneys for my prosecution. Cheryl Bergerbaum, the secretary, personally contracted with an attorney for $30,000. All of the legal expenditures have been hidden from the HOA as this board created a self management situation and all financial records were stolen. I was finally able to get my conviction “set aside”.
These horrible board members. including the treasurer Richad Schabin. still own in the Venetian Condominiums in Scottsdale, AZ. The current board has taken no action to have those stolen funds reimbursed and these board members were never charged with fraud and theft. Bad board members can get away with murder if the majority agree.
2 thoughts on “Sandy S”
I am sorry that you redacted the names of the bad board members from the Venetian Condominiums who got away with criminal activities. You can not sue TRUTH. It is bad enough what these horrible neighbors did to me, but the fact that they can not be exposed, makes it just that much worse. If I had an extra $100,000, they would be in JAIL. I can not even get the Arizona Bar to cooperate with a complaint against the HOA attorney Clint Goodman who helped orchestrate the fiasco. HOA members have no rights or chance to defend themselves against corrrupt board members unless they have unlimited funds. Know your board members. Stay viligent in your elections.
Municipalities relegate their duties to HOAs, insisting that “civic-minded volunteers” manage, be responsible for and take care of issues in the community.
When the homeowners who have the most knowledge and understanding of what is going on find they cannot access records (required by the law and the contract),financials, and relevant information related to the community where they live in order to manage these assets as any other corporate entity would do, the HOA Board members, municipalities, cities and governmental officials sit by idly like the turpentined tar baby in B’rer Rabbit. The more one punches to solicit answers, the more entwined one becomes in the wrath of the HOA and a system that is set to fail each homeowner. Bewildered and trapped, the homeowner has little recourse.
Regardless, no “books, records and papers” are produced and the homeowner cannot effectively manage his/her assets in such a lawless environment.
Lawmakers must stop ignoring the elephant in the room. No city would tolerate being blocked from reviewing the use of their money, their own meetings, their conversations about what is going on in the community.
Why is this tolerated in an HOA, while the lawmakers sit by quietly consenting for the perpetual continuance of such abuses year after year? It’s not like advocates haven’t been speaking about this issues! They have, and for years!
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